Understanding first quarter GDP
GDP shrank at a 5.5 percent annual rate in the first quarter of this year. I find it useful to understand how the major components of GDP are performing, and this graph allows me to do that. Let's hope the Q2 numbers are less bad. Whatever the results, they will be largely independent of the stimulus, which is having only a small positive effect even now. The scary scenario is the one where the labor market continues to decline, and that causes consumption to go negative before the other sectors have time to recover.